Robert Griffin III is officially a Cleveland Brown, and the 26-year-old QB is hoping a fresh start with a new franchise can revitalize his career.
During RG3’s recent workout with the team, Browns head coach Hue Jackson fell in love with the QB’s skill set, observing the athleticism and accuracy that made him the 2012 NFL Rookie of the Year. No doubt he still has talent, but Griffin has lots of work to do if he wants to again be counted among the game’s elite.
According to NFL Network reporter Jeff Darlington, RG3 will soon begin training with legendary quarterback guru Tom House, who happens to be a long-time friend of Jackson’s, and he has tutored some of the best quarterbacks in the NFL.
A former professional baseball player, the 68-year-old House has extensive experience as a pitching coach for the Texas Rangers, Houston Astros and San Diego Padres. During his Hall of Fame speech, Nolan Ryan credited House with getting him in “the best shape of [his] life.”
What qualifies a pitching coach to cross over to train NFL quarterbacks? As it turns out, House doesn’t think the two are all that different. “I’m a rotational-athlete evaluator,” House once told NFL.com. “Pitching, quarterbacking, tennis, golf, hitting . . . all rotational athletes have the same timing, the same kinematic sequencing—hips, shoulders, arms and implement—and, depending on the verbiage, the same mechanics. It’s all the same, in order of importance: timing, sequencing and mechanics.”
House uses high-tech tools to capture and analyze a quarterback’s throwing motion, picking up on even the smallest deficiencies and imbalances. He places small sensors all over the athlete’s body and uses 1,000-frame-per-second cameras to create a three-dimensional rendering of their throwing motion. This allows House to pick up on minor mechanical issues that might be difficult for the human eye to detect.
House’s latest success story is Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton. After training extensively with House last off-season, Dalton subsequently posted the highest QB rating and completion percentage of his NFL career.
Working with House could be tremendously beneficial for Griffin. Experts believe a gradual decay in his mechanics was a major factor behind his recent struggles. “[He has] regressed in the fundamental way of throwing the football: his throwing slot, his footwork, his inability to remain consistent in that,” ESPN analyst Ron Jaworski told Colin Cowherd during a 2014 radio appearance.
Can House help RG3 resurrect his once-promising career? Hue Jackson is banking on it.
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